West's Eagles fly past Wolves
Eagle River didn’t have an answer for West Anchorage’s Lamarr Brown.
The senior wide receiver caught six passes for 198 yards and four touchdowns in the Eagles’ 39-13 Cook Inlet Conference win over the Wolves on Sept. 9 at Anchorage Football Stadium.
West quarterback Conor Feckley recorded 282 passing yards and five touchdowns. Eagle River threw four interceptions and gained 118 yards threw the air — all of which were thrown by Peter Kott.
With senior back Malcolm Bell watching the game from the sidelines on crutches, the Wolves dressed 23 players — one less than they had the previous two weeks.
“Everybody’s playing two ways,” senior Danton Evilsizer said.
Despite its low numbers and dropping to 0-4 in the conference and 0-5 overall, Evilsizer said Eagle River will not quit.
“We’re short on players, but we’ve got all the heart in the world,” he said.
The coaching staff, too, won’t accept throwing in the towel, Evilsizer said.
“All of our coaches said, ‘If you give up, you won’t step on that field,’” he said.
West drew first blood after a scoreless first quarter. Feckley and Brown hooked up for a 51-yard touchdown on the first play after Desmond Corpuz picked off Kott near midfield. Eagle River responded just under six minutes later.
Kelechi Madubuko took the shotgun snap and hit Kott with a pass behind the line of scrimmage to his left. Kott then laid a pass into the arms of Javon Cross for a 19-yard touchdown. Eagle River trailed by one point after a blocked point-after-touchdown attempt.
The Eagles answered immediately. DJ Williams took the ensuing kickoff for a 67-yard return, setting West up on Eagle River’s 26. Three plays later, Brown caught a 7-yard pass from Feckley to give West a seven-point lead.
Williams added an 85-yard kickoff return for a touchdown late in the third quarter. The Eagles finished with more than 200 return yards to Eagle River’s 37.
A Wolves’ three-and-out gave West one more possession before the half. The Eagles needed just four plays to find the end zone for a third time in the second quarter.
After back-to-back first downs, Marcel Dion came up with a 24-yard grab on a pass from Feckley just inside the pylon. Dion was ruled in bounds — a call that Eagle River’s sideline and fans disagreed with.
Eagle River looked poised to put points on the board on its first possession of the second half, but a Kott pass deflected off of Madubuko’s outstretched hands and was intercepted by West. The Eagles then went 93 yards in two plays to gain a 26-6 advantage following the turnover.
Brown scored on a 73-yard pass that mirrored his first touchdown. The Eagles scored again 1:09 later. A successful onside kick gave West possession at the Wolves’ 45-yard line. Three plays after Brown snagged a 28-yard pass, he notched his fourth score of the game on a 25-yard strike over the middle from Feckley.
Eagle River then put together a scoring drive. Kott capped off a six-play, 56-yard drive with a 6-yard run. Kott led the Wolves with 68 yards on the ground.
Eagle River’s post-game huddle — led by team captain Madubuko — remained positive.
“Don’t give up. We never give up,” Madubuko told his teammates.
Evilsizer likened the team’s relationship to a brotherhood.
“We all pick each other up,” he said.
Eagle River will host East High on Saturday, Sept. 17 at 2 p.m. for its homecoming game. Focusing on the upcoming game each week is important, Evilisizer said.
“We can’t live in the past,” he said. “When we lose a game, you can’t dwell on it. We work hard and look to the next game.”